Saturday, January 15, 2005

Beyonce Wants a "Soldier" (Not)

As the Crossfader noted in an earlier post, the dumbing down of hip hop culture continues unabated. While that is to be expected, I supposed, the part I find disingenuous is the attendant hagiography of the "soldier," a descriptive archetype that has found its greatest success in the Beyonce retro side project, Destiny's Child. In short the "soldier" is the road dawg, roughneck brother, who is always ready to, as they say, "ride or die" in other words the "loveable rogue."

I'm not one to knock anyone's hustle, "soldier" or (most likely) not, but the Crossfader can't help but see through the colossal farce that are the lyrics to this song. Regardless of what Ms. Knowles says, a "soldier" is not what she wants and the average street "soldier" wouldn't be able to get within a mile of her bodyguard's bodyguard so why project this image of being some blinged out project chick when she is on record stating:

"I grew up in a very nice house in Houston, went to private school all my life and I've never even been to the 'hood. Not that there's anything wrong with the 'hood, but just to assume that I grew up there because of my color ..." (Interview Magazine)

The effect is to basically say to young Black kids silly enough to stay in school that, unfortunately, that path won't lead you to anyone resembling Beyonce, maybe Condoleeza Rice but there you have it. Meanwhile, on the other side of the world parents are selling everything they own to get their kids into an American school. If it weren't so sad it would be funny.

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